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Study: Trade War Cost Americans Additional $42 Billion
USAgNet - 12/10/2019

As negotiations between the United States and China continue on the phase one trade deal, new data released by Tariffs Hurt the Heartland shows American consumers and businesses have paid an additional $42 billion since the trade war began in February 2018 through October 2019.

This data comes less than a week before yet another round of tariffs are expected to be implemented on primarily consumer facing goods. In the month of October, there were nearly $18 billion worth of imports from China that will be hit with a 15 percent tax beginning December 15th unless those tariffs are rolled back.

In the month of October alone, Americans paid a total of $7.2 billion in tariffs, more than any other amount in U.S. history. That is one billion dollars higher than in October 2018, which itself shattered previous records for tariffs collected. This significant increase in tariffs paid by Americans is primarily driven by tariffs implemented by the Trump administration, which account for over $4 billion of the total in October.

"According to an analysis of data from the president's own Department of Commerce, American businesses, farmers and consumers - and not China - have paid $42 billion in additional taxes because of these tariffs," stated Americans for Free Trade spokesperson Jonathan Gold.

The data released today also shows the devastating impact of retaliatory tariffs on American exports as well. Chinese tariffs on American exports totaled $12 billion since the start of the trade war and topped $1.3 billion in October alone as China further raised tariffs in retaliation for U.S. List 4A tariffs.

These tariffs have focused heavily on American farm exports. The October data shows that exports to China that are subject to retaliatory tariffs are $30 billion below their 2017 levels - a 25 percent decrease.

The trade war has hit swing states particularly hard. In seven of the top swing states (Florida, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin), Americans have paid a combined additional $7.66 billion in taxes because of these tariffs. In Michigan alone, businesses, farmers and consumers have paid an additional $1.8 billion in taxes.

For the month of October, people in these seven states have paid an extra $687 million, including almost $138 million in Ohio alone. As these states face higher and higher tariffs, their economies begin to suffer. Unemployment is rising in key swing states like Michigan and Wisconsin, with Moody's Analytics estimating the trade war has reduced U.S. employment by 300,000. Farm bankruptcies have risen 24 percent since September of last year, and some of the hardest hit areas are in must-win swing states.

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